Welcome Spring! We sure have needed you. This winter was a rough one. Mother Nature wasn’t happy. The election was over, but then…was it really? The Insurrection on the Capital made us wonder. And the Pandemic raged on with devastating impact. The economy has been great for some, and the opposite for most. Racial strife has escalated. So, how have YOU been sleeping?
That’s the point of this month. We are in stressful times. We must focus on the stress that is all around us, how it is affecting us, and what we can do about it.
Stress is not all bad. Stress in some forms can save our lives. It alerts us of danger. In prehistoric times, it helped make us aware of predators looking for their next meal. Obviously, as noted in Healthline, for immediate, short-term situations like that, stress can be helpful to your health. It can help us cope with potentially serious situations. Our bodies respond to stress by releasing hormones like cortisol that increase our heart and breathing rates and ready our muscles to respond. But today’s stress is different. It’s always there. It doesn’t leave when the lion passes by. It’s become chronic, and the pervasiveness of stress today can have very harmful effects on our bodies and our minds. This is why we must find ways to Grind Less and Glide More. Or Glide More and Grind Less.
The words are interchangeable for a reason. In some aspects of life, you’ll find ways to Glide first then Grind less. You’ll find that if you just stop for a minute–you look up and find you can do some things in easier ways very quickly. Other times, you have to keep grinding away. And in doing so, you discover an innovation; or you bring someone in to help, so you Grind less before you Glide more.
Bottom line—we must reduce stress where we can. First, we have to recognize where it hits us. Here are some of the harmful effects of stress—do you have any of these symptoms?
Unchecked, these symptoms can lead to obesity, diabetes, and additions—which can lead to other more serious health issues. Stress can even affect your memory because you have trouble remembering the simplest things. You may think you’re getting Alzheimer’s or dementia—but it’s the brain fog of pandemic stress, according to neuroscientist Lisa Genova.
The Mayo Clinic dives deeper into the mood and behavior effects of stress:
Critically, while all women face stressors, Linda Goler Blount, President, and CEO of the Black Women’s Health Imperative (BWHI) says that “the inequities in the impact of stress on the health and well-being of Black women cannot be ignored. The lived experiences of Black women speak to the overwhelming stress in their lives.” This affects our life expectancy and higher rates of heart disease, breast cancer, maternal mortality, and more.